Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

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Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 4:44 am

I'll make the following general observations about AL East team's this offseason to date:

Red Sox: In good shape, basically the same cast as 2007 with everyone a year older which is good in the cases of Lester, Buchholz, Pedroia, and Ellsbury but maybe not so good for veterans like Varitek.

New York: Same team as 2007 but older (and that's without trying to sign Roger in 2008) and more expensive. Could benefit from a full year of Hughes and Joba but at this point have to be considered a lesser team than the Red Sox.

Blue Jays: A lot of the same as 2007 with the addition of Rolen. If this team stays healthy and Vernon Wells rebounds they could/should improve over 2008 and maybe the second best team in the division.

The Rays (formerly the Devil Rays): Young, exciting and dangerous. The addition of Garza should add another solid starter to their rotation. If Percival can help their bullpen they could be a .500 team or better.

Orioles: They are trading Erik Bedard away from going challenging the A's as the worst team in the AL in 2008.

I'd be interested in knowing in what other SoSH'ers think about the AL East in 2008. It maybe worthwhile to do some projections of both record and in what order the team's will finish in 2008.

Edit: It is going to take forever for me to call them "The Rays." I have neighbors who are named "The Rays." I digress.



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post Jan 20 2008, 01:16 PM
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Red Sox: Same team with some young infusion, probably the biggest concern is the bullpen, can Okajima pitch out of his mind again, can Delcarmen continue to get better? Maybe some young guys towards the end of the year to help if needed. (98-64)

New York: Similar as last year, with more of Joba, Hughes, Kennedy. Old team, needs to stay healthy, Joba to the rotation around the all star break if needed. (94-68)

Blue Jays: If the young starting pitching (Marcum, Litsch, McGowan) continues to improve, Ryan comes back healthy, and the defense is good, this could be a tough team to compete against. (84-78)

Devil Rays: Who knows if Percival is the answer to help the bullpen, but if he is healthy and solidifies the pen, the young arms in the rotation and the offense could be a threat. I can definitely see the Rays in the race in 09. (73-89)

Orioles: I look for them to struggle now that they lost their team supply of B-12. (68-94)



So a 4 game victory in the east by the Red Sox.



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Count me among those that fear the fast approach of the Devil Rays. I love what they have done with their bullpen by bringing in a few reliable arms in Percival and Wheeler over the past year rather than filling their bullpen with untested arms. Over the past 5 years they have lost a lot of games because of the crap they were throwing against the wall out there but with this new reshaped pen it could win them 5-10. Add that to a rotation that is looking better and better every year I could actually see them just falling short of .500 maybe a 79-83 record.

I actually see the Yankees and Sox in very much the same boat, lots of high ceiling young pitching and aging power bats. Obviously the Sox have more pitching depth and the Yankees have more offensive depth, but the concerns are the similar. If Ortiz or Manny gets injured and are out of the lineup for any extended period of time I think they could be in a world of trouble and I think the same can be said if the Yankees lose Wang or Rivera which would heap even more pressure on the Yankees young arms.

I wouldn't put ny too far behind the Sox if at all.
They return the lineup that scored 504 runs in their last 75 games; and I don't think we're going to see much of Igawa, Rasner, Chase Wright, or Tyler Clippard, guys who were responsible for 24 start

I don't see why that stat matters. The first two months count too.

I'm with George. Matsui, Damon, Jeter, and Giambi could all easily miss a chunk of time and/or continue their decline.

Also, while the Yankees were seemingly pulling out all the stops to try and catch the Sox, Tito was not exactly putting the pedal to the metal. The reasoning behind that, and the results, have been discussed ad nauseum and the validity of that assertion is still questionable, but it's worth noting.

You mis-understood me. You cannot expect the talent on that team to start out THAT bad again. Even if the MFY's played .500 ball the first two months, they win the division. I don't know how people can state we're the obvious favorites when we won the division by two games. The MFY's probably won't have AAA pitchers making 25 starts this season just as Mike Lowell probably won't put up close to similar numbers.
QUOTE(findguapo @ Jan 20 2008, 10:16 AM) *
New York: Similar as last year, with more of Joba, Hughes, Kennedy. Old team, needs to stay healthy, Joba to the rotation around the all star break if needed. (94-68)


What is your basis for saying that Joba will move to the rotation at mid-season? Every report I've seen has said that he'll start the season in the rotation. Assuming Joba is going to be used as a starter, Rivera is the only reliable reliever in the MFY bullpen.

QUOTE(findguapo @ Jan 20 2008, 10:16 AM) *
Blue Jays: If the young starting pitching (Marcum, Litsch, McGowan) continues to improve, Ryan comes back healthy, and the defense is good, this could be a tough team to compete against. (84-78)


Has anyone seen a report on Ryan's status? I haven't seen anything since the end of last year (which said he was "on-track" to return in ST 2008.

Since Burnett can opt out at the end of this season, I expect he'll have a particularly good yea

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 4:45 am

Of course they have risks as well but I think NY just has more. Ortiz just turned 32 and put up arguably his best year ever even with a gimpy knee that has been repaired. And since he doesn't play defense, it's not like it further reduces his contribution, such as what would happen if Jeter continues to have knee issues.

Manny will miss his 30 or so games just like he has for the last two years. I don't think many people factor in a full season of Manny when evaluating the team.

Except for getting hit by a pitch on the thumb, Lowell has been pretty healthy. He may not put up a .879 OPS again, but I don't think he belongs in the nagging injury category.

Varitek, like any catcher, could get hurt. His situation is the biggest concern of the guys you mentioned, mostly because there is no legit backup.

So while Boston certainly has its own issues, they don't compare to Jeter, Matsui, Damon, Abreu, Giambi and Posada as far as I'm concerned.

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 4:47 am

I don't think there is any way the Yankees start this season the way they did last year. It's possible but nowhere near probable. I don't think they will finish the way they did either (with pants on fire). That team will do waht they always do and flirt with the 95-100 win barrier.
As far as the Rays are concerned... were it not for the 2003 Marlins very few people would be hyping TB as much right now. They definitely have the talent and, at the very least, should be exciting to watch (were it not for the most awful TV announcers in MLB history). However, their offensive success is predicated on improvement from many areas. Not only that, but it also assumes Carlos Pena will be close to the numbers he put up last year. If I were a gambler I'd be putting alot of money on him not repeating '07. That puts TB as a very large question mark. Anywhere from another 95-100 loss season to a 90 win season and flirting with the WC.





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I agree with those that see the annual dog fight between the Sox & Yanks - unlikley either gets much seperation, and I don't see us as having a significant leg up on them starting the season - they will score their 900+ runs again most likely.

As for the Rays - yes, with their better picthing depth I expect them to be a pain in the ass to all the other AL East teams that are used to feasting on the 18 opportunities against them. While the Sox and O's took care of business last year against the Rays, the Rays did go 9-9 vs. the Jays last year and 8-10 against the Yankees. The O's of course will be dreadful - not much disagrement on that point around here.

Its the Jays I can't figure out - they could either be pretty good, or finish a couple games behind the Rays IMO. I actually think while their starting pitching inproved somewhat, the addition of Rolen (and loss of Glaus) and Ectstein will actually make them somewhat worse on offense next year. Glaus at times could be terrifying in that lineup and Rolen on the other hand seems like he because of injury/age is really declining as an offenseive force...



The decline risk for the Red Sox is definitely lower than it is for the Yankees. Looking at each team position by position really illustrates that.

Red Sox lineup
lf: Manny had a career worst year last year. He is old enough that he could be entering a Bernie Williams type decline phase. He also is young enough that he could bounce back to his career norms or close to it. This could either be much better or much worse.
cf: Whoever starts is likely to be equivalent to better. Crisp had an abismal season and should bounce back a little offensively. Ellsbury is likely to be about average offensively. Both will play great defense. Not a ton of potential for change here in either direction.
rf: Drew will be better. How much so remains to be seen.
3b: Lowell isn't really an injury concern but he is unlikely to match his career year. The likely outcome is a decline towards his career averages.
ss: Same as Drew. Lugo will be better. His improvement potential is lower than Drew's though.
2b: Pedroia is likely to play similarly. Probably a bit worse. A pretty stable position.
1b: Youks has mostly upside still.
c: Certainly the biggest area of concern for the Red Sox. Posada sets a precedent for Varitek to still be good to very good but he also really looks to be declining. This is by far the most likely area of decline for the Sox offense and could really hurt the team.
DH: Ortiz is entering into the gradual section of the decline arc for a typical player. He has also improved every year for the last 4 years. I'd expect a similar performance to the last couple seasons with modest injury risk.

Overall, the Red Sox look pretty likely to stand pat on offense/defense. Manny, Drew, and Lugo are likely to provide upgrades. They have depth up the middle with Lowrie knocking on the door if Lugo or Pedroia struggle. Ortiz is nowhere near the injury or decline risk some seem to believe he is. Lowell will decline but is highly unlikely to drop off the table. Varitek is a huge concern.

Yankees lineup
lf: Matsui missed significant time last year with an injury. He has been healthy otherwise. I'd expect improvement due to him playing more games, but he is not the star he looked like for a few years anymore and is definitely declining.
cf: Cabrera is a capable backup and can hold his own as a starter. Damon can't play the position anymore and his bat is not good enough to justify that. The healthier Damon is, the worse cf looks for the Yankees since Cabrera is a better option at this point.
rf: Abreu is likely to be an on-base machine with some pop. His power looks to be on the decline but he should be roughly the same player. He has had good health too.
3b: Much like Lowell, ARod is coming off a career year. His performance will regress but will still be great.
ss: Jeter is starting to get old. He definitely has injury concerns. If healthy, he will still produce.
2b: Cano is likely to be about the same player. He has breakout potential. He doesn't have a lot of downside.
1b: It was a blackhole and will continue to be.
c: Posada is in the Lowell/ARod category. He also has age related risk factors, but played so well last year and has a remarkable health record, so I will give him the benefit of the doubt and assume injury risk/massive decline risk is pretty low. He won't be as good as last year.
DH: Giambi is declining in health and performance. He still has a lot of upside, but the risk here is pretty large.

Overall, lf should be a lot better as could 2b. Career years at c/3b won't be repeated and will hurt them. Cabrera limits the damage Damon can cause. And, throughout the lineup, age and injury are huge concerns. The lineup has a lot of variability in it and is hard to predict. They could score 900-1000 runs. They could also fall off a cliff. I'd say a slight decline over last year is the most likely outcome, as injuries were a big problem last year too but ARod and Posada won't be good enough to carry the team again this year.

Red Sox bullpen
They look strong. Okajima is likely to decline. Paps still has some injury concerns. But, they have some good young arms and Paps doesn't really have anymore risk than any other reliever. Expect a bullpen that is worse than last years but still one of the best in the game.

Yankees bullpen
Rivera is getting old and started to show it a little last year. With Joba moving to the rotation, they lack any other weapons and although their system is stocked at sp, the relief depth isn't as great. Expect some arm to step up and be a reliable to dominant second option, Rivera to decline slightly, and the bullpen to be pretty similar to last year, strong at the top but with no depth.

Bullpens are notoriously hard to predict, so nothing is set in stone.

Red Sox rotation
Beckett will decline to some degree but should still be very good.
Daisuke should improve in his second season. He is unlikely to be worse.
Buchholz has star potential but could struggle.
Lester looks to be ready to breakout. His downside risk is as a tolerable 5th.
Schilling has age risks but has shown no sign he won't be effective. Expect a slight decline.
Wake is Wake.

Overall, small declines from Beckett and Schilling should be counteracted by the vast improvement that is Buchholz, Lester's upside, and Daisuke having a year of ML experience. Wake mitigates the injury risk and the Sox have young talented pitchers who might be knocking on the door late ala Buchholz in 2007. They have talent and depth and are more likely to improve than decline.

Yankees rotation
I still have trouble liking Wang, but at this point it is hard to predict a big decline for him. He has not shown a consistent ability to stay healthy though.
Petitte looks healthy and strong. Expect some age-related decline ala Schilling but not much.
Mussina is cooked. He might bounce back but I wouldn't count on much from him.
Hughes is like Buchholz. Should be a huge improvement. He has more injury concerns after last season though.
Kennedy is Lester with slightly lower upside. He could be anywhere from tolerable to very good. Expect league average.
Joba is a wildcard. He was dominant as a reliever but might not have the secondary stuff yet to translate that to the rotation. If he doesn't work out, he can always move back to the bullpen.

Overall, the Yankees have pretty good depth but lack an ace. They also have a lot of injury risk throughout their rotation. They should be better than last year but are unlikely to be great.

If there is a running theme here it is that the Yankees have a ton of risk throughout their roster. They are old and have injury histories. They also have a ton of talent. You would be crazy to write them off in the AL East. However, the Red Sox have similar talent levels--worse offense, better defense, better pitching--and have much less injury risk. They are younger and have better positional depth and similar pitching depth with more talent at the top and a better health record. The Red Sox are still the team to beat and probably by a several game margin.



QUOTE(glennhoffmania @ Jan 21 2008, 12:47 PM) *
So while Boston certainly has its own issues, they don't compare to Jeter, Matsui, Damon, Abreu, Giambi and Posada as far as I'm concerned.


I just don't think when people have said in this thread "the Yankees are old and they will get hurt" is really any type of top flight groundbreaking analysis. Injuries can happen to any team. Injuries devestated the Sox two years ago, the World Champion Cardinals got bit by the injury bug last year. It just happens. I also don't think the Yankees are anymore susceptible then the Sox or any other team is. Matsui has been healthy for his career but broke his wrist two years ago and I believe he started last year on the DL as he one of those rash of hammy strains they fired the strength and condition coach over. Abreu had an oblique strain in Spring Training and tried to play through it (some think this explains his suckitude in the first half). I don't recall Jeter or Posada missing any significant time last year. With Giambi anything he can actually give the Yankees I would consider a bonus. And with Damon, well that was an ill-advised signing. However, the Yankees have the luxury of being able to rest these guys or even rotate Giambi and Damon in the DH slot.

QUOTE(JakeRae)
Joba is a wildcard. He was dominant as a reliever but might not have the secondary stuff yet to translate that to the rotation. If he doesn't work out, he can always move back to the bullpen.


Do you have link to an analyst that says Joba doesn't have the secondary stuff to translate to the rotation? Baseball America's John Manuel says Chamberlain has 3 pitches that grade in the 70-80 range that sounds like starter stuff to me.

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 4:48 am

QUOTE(joewoodfan @ Jan 21 2008, 12:17 PM) *
Both Bellhorn and KMG speak to something I can't put a finger on myself. I'm excited for the Rays this season; I think they've got some great young players that have great potential like Upton or Longoria. They've got Kazmir, Shields, and now Matt Garza, and they've strengthened their bullpen by hanging onto Wheeler and taking on Percival.

But I've been here before. This marks yet another pre-season where I'm excited for them and expecting them to break out. Something is not panning out here, and I can't quite determine what that is...

I'm still psyched, but there's something amiss with all the hype, because we've heard it before and been disappointed with the end results. It would be great to see a bunch of youngsters pick up and make a run at things, but I'm feeling pretty skeptically about Tampa.


Perhaps it's as simple as Red Sox and Yankee fans seeing their young kids break into the major leagues and do just as well as BA thought they'd do. We're all expecting that kind of performance from TB's kids, but I suspect it's harder when so much of the team is young like that. The Sox/Yankees are breaking in one or two kids with many more talented veterans there to help them acclimate to winning in the big leagues; TB's youngsters are "home alone" as it were...

QUOTE(Wingack @ Jan 21 2008, 05:39 PM) *
Do you have link to an analyst that says Joba doesn't have the secondary stuff to translate to the rotation? Baseball America's John Manuel says Chamberlain has 3 pitches that grade in the 70-80 range that sounds like starter stuff to me.


I'd have to agree that some Sox fans are jumping on this line, probably because it seems so familiar to what we just went through with Paplebon. But every report I've seen has him keeping his velocity deep into games, and he has much, much better breaking/offspeed stuff. I think he'll look a bit different than he did for the Yankees at the end of last year with the switch, but will still be sucsessfull as a starter if he's healthy. The only question I see with him is his IP.

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 4:49 am

QUOTE(Kevin Youkulele @ Jan 21 2008, 11:19 AM) *
Obviously, we don't really know whether the Padres actually want Matsui. I kind of wonder whether turning the deal into a 3-way is how Santana ultimately gets moved, though, as the various 2-team trades have not materialized.


I think it's more likely that it's just going to be a boring waiting game, with the deal getting done when the Twins pick the best offer or manage to extract some other small amount of value out of one of their suitors as a PR victory and pull the trigger.

EDIT: The Padres thing seems really far fetched. Moving Matsui solves the Yankees problems, but goes against what the Padres have been doing for the last couple of years (and would also give them a pretty old OF with Edmonds and Giles), and Matsui would likely be brutal in Petco. I have a hard time seeing Matsui bring back more value in trade in terms of prospects that would interest the Twins more than the prospects they're already trying to get from the Yankees.

The current Rosenthal rumor has the Padres interested in old friend Matt Murton, but the Cubs don't want to screw up a potential block buster with Baltimore. Some trades need to fall for everyone to get their house in orde

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 4:49 am

UOTE(koufax32 @ Jan 21 2008, 12:38 PM) *
If there is a desire by the FO to strengthen the rotation this could help. It would allow Papelbon to go into the rotation while not giving up much at the back end of the bullpen. It's a cheaper alternative (albeit, one that doesn't give the Sox rotation as dominant a starter) with more payroll flexibility. It also increases the chances of Minny resigning Johan (in theory).

Paps is staying put - in the bullpen.

QUOTE
"A player is not going to succeed in a starting role if he feels inside he's a closer and has demonstrated he's one of the best in the world," Epstein said in a conference call. "He's committed to doing this and doing it extremely well for the next decade."

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 4:50 am

Via the Fantasy blog Fake Teams:
QUOTE(Fake Teams)
Yesterday morning on "Baseball This Morning with Mark Patrick and Buck Martinez", I heard an interesting proposal for a three team trade that would bring Johan Santana to the Yankees. ....

The team was the San Diego Padres, and the great proposal built on the recent statements from Padres' GM Kevin Towers on his quest for a corner outfielder. The proposal involved the Padres acquriing Hideki Matsui from the Yankees, the Yankees getting Johan Santana and the Twins getting a combination of players/prospects from the Yankees and Padres.

The issues is which two Padres prospects/players go to the Twins for Matsui and which two players/prospects go from the Yankees to the Twins for Santana. Given reports that 2B Matt Antonelli is going to be tried in CF by the Padres, he makes a good option to headline the Padres package. With OBP skills that match the Red Sox' Jacoby Ellsbury, he makes a good alternative. ....

In summary, the deal looks like this. The Twins deal Johan Santana for Hideki Matsui, Phil Hughes and Kevin Whelan. The team flips Matsui for Matt Antonelli and Scott Hairston.


Not being too familiar with the Padres, I can't say much about what they're giving up; offense is good for them, though. This leaves the Yankees with a starting OF of Damon/Melky/Abreu; there's not as much pop as there was, but I think it works as they deal from strength (offense) to address their major need in a big way. Matsui/Hughes/Whelan may get around the issue of the Twins wanting Kennedy or not being happy with Melky.

Obviously, we don't really know whether the Padres actually want Matsui. I kind of wonder whether turning the deal into a 3-way is how Santana ultimately gets moved, though, as the various 2-team trades have not materialized.

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 4:51 am

A new Johan Santana Trade Proposal


http://www.faketeams.com/story/2008/1/19/75615/6782

By Eric Hz Section: Baseball
Posted on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 07:56:15 AM EDT

According to La Velle E. Neal III, there was no news on the Johan Santana trade front. While the list of suitors is down to the Mets and Red Sox, the Twins still expect to hear from the Yankees before Johan is finally dealt.

Yesterday morning on "Baseball This Morning with Mark Patrick and Buck Martinez", I heard an interesting proposal for a three team trade that would bring Johan Santana to the Yankees. While the hosts were not familar with the third team's prospects, I have more familiarity with them so I thought it was a great call-in trade proposal.

Who is the third team and why was it a great proposal? The team was the San Diego Padres, and the great proposal built on the recent statements from Padres' GM Kevin Towers on his quest for a corner outfielder. The proposal involved the Padres acquriing Hideki Matsui from the Yankees, the Yankees getting Johan Santana and the Twins getting a combination of players/prospects from the Yankees and Padres.

The issues is which two Padres prospects/players go to the Twins for Matsui and which two players/prospects go from the Yankees to the Twins for Santana. Given reports that 2B Matt Antonelli is going to be tried in CF by the Padres, he makes a good option to headline the Padres package. With OBP skills that match the Red Sox' Jacoby Ellsbury, he makes a good alternative.

With Matsui in the fold, OF Scott Hairston would have no where to play. He would make an excellent second player to include. He'd bring double-digit HR power off the bench for the Twins and makes a much more threatening option at DH/LF against left-handers than the embarassment of poverty the Twins used last season.

From New York, the Twins would no longer need Melky Cabrera as Antonelli and Hairston fill the roles of top prospect and 0-3 year major league player. That leaves the Yankees providing the pitching the Twins desire. Phil Hughes fills that role. However, with the Padres providing two of the four requested players, the Yanks need only add that 4th player. A bullpen arm like Russ Ohlendorf or Kevin Whelan seems reasonable. Maybe even AAA SS Alberto Gonzalez if the Twins want to restock their upper minors in anticipation of 2009 when no-hit SS Adam Everett will be a free agent.

In summary, the deal looks like this. The Twins deal Johan Santana for Hideki Matsui, Phil Hughes and Kevin Whelan. The team flips Matsui for Matt Antonelli and Scott Hairston. This appears to be a win/win/win with the possible expection of that 4th player going to San Diego instead of Minnesota.

Thoughts?

*

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 4:53 am

Brady wearing walking cast while on visit to New York

http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/playoffs07/news/story?id=3207592

Tom Brady is seen wearing a walking cast while in New York on Monday.
The New England Patriots have sauntered through the rest of the league this year. But on the verge of perfection, their leader has come up gimpy.

Photographs and video show Tom Brady wearing what appears to be a walking cast while in New York on Monday. A video of Brady in the cast is available on TMZ.com.

The Boston Herald reported that Brady -- flowers in hand -- was visiting the apartment of his girlfriend, Gisele Bundchen.

During his weekly radio show on WEEI, Brady did not deny that he suffered some sort of injury during Sunday's win over the San Diego Chargers in the AFC Championship Game.

"Ah, you know, there's always bumps and bruises. I'll be ready for the Super Bowl," Brady said. "I'm not worried about that. I'm not missing this one. I'd have to be on a stretcher to miss this one. There will be treatment this week. In games like this, you get a little nicked up. It's nothing serious."

Patriots spokesman Stacey James wrote in an e-mail to the AP late Monday night that the team had no comment on the photos.

Brady, who threw 50 touchdown passes and only eight interceptions during the regular season, was not at his best on Sunday. He threw three interceptions in the 21-12 victory over the Chargers.

He now has two weeks to recover. The Patriots' Super Bowl matchup against the New York Giants is Feb. 3.

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 8:42 am

http://www.twincities.com/walters/ci_8040073?nclick_check=1

The Twins say they're not panicking while holding out for the best deal for Johan Santana. But word within baseball circles is that offers by the New York Yankees (no more Phil Hughes) and Boston Red Sox are diminishing by the week. Best bet now for a trade of the two-time Cy Young Award winner appears to be with the New York Mets in a deal that would not include fast-rising hitter Fernando Martinez.



OVERHEARD

Twins manager Ron Gardenhire, asked who will be his ace if Johan Santana is traded: "Won't have one. But we've got a couple of kings."

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 8:44 am

Johan Santana Rumors

I know some of you crave daily Johan Santana updates...today we've got a blurb from Charley Walters:

The Twins say they're not panicking while holding out for the best deal for Johan Santana. But word within baseball circles is that offers by the New York Yankees (no more Phil Hughes) and Boston Red Sox are diminishing by the week. Best bet now for a trade of the two-time Cy Young Award winner appears to be with the New York Mets in a deal that would not include fast-rising hitter Fernando Martinez.

Yikes - from those solid Yankee/Red Sox offers to a Martinez-less Mets package? If that happens then I would say Bill Smith overplayed his hand.

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 8:46 am

Buzz: Mets are Best Bet for Santana


http://www.metsblog.com/

...posted by Matthew Cerrone...

In a Sunday notebook for the Star-Tribune, Charley Walters writes…

“The Twins say they’re not panicking while holding out for the best deal for Johan Santana. But word within baseball circles is that offers by the New York Yankees (no more Phil Hughes) and Boston Red Sox are diminishing by the week.

“Best bet now for a trade of the two-time Cy Young Award winner appears to be with the New York Mets in a deal that would not include fast-rising hitter Fernando Martinez.”

…the word within baseball circles…priceless…i love it…

…anyway, i know there are some fans who feel the Mets should just give up martinez, so to be done with this madness and guarantee santana comes to queens…but, if the Yankees and Red Sox are ‘diminishing by the week,’ as walters writes, and as multiple reports have suggested over the last week or so, then why should the Mets part with one penny more than they should…

…as i said several days ago, this is going to come down to santana - and whether he is or will put pressure on the Twins to a) trade him sooner than later, and b), and more specifically, trade him to the Mets…if he does that, then the Mets have a lot of leverage, and should hang tight to fernando…

…however, if santana sits on the sideline, and the Yankees and Red Sox keep a toe in the water, then fernando’s name will and should continue to be mentioned…

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 8:48 am

Buzz: Mets are Best Bet for Santana

In a Sunday notebook for the Star-Tribune, Charley Walters writes…

“The Twins say they’re not panicking while holding out for the best deal for Johan Santana. But word within baseball circles is that offers by the New York Yankees (no more Phil Hughes) and Boston Red Sox are diminishing by the week.

“Best bet now for a trade of the two-time Cy Young Award winner appears to be with the New York Mets in a deal that would not include fast-rising hitter Fernando Martinez.”

…the word within baseball circles…priceless…i love it…

…anyway, i know there are some fans who feel the Mets should just give up martinez, so to be done with this madness and guarantee santana comes to queens…but, if the Yankees and Red Sox are ‘diminishing by the week,’ as walters writes, and as multiple reports have suggested over the last week or so, then why should the Mets part with one penny more than they should…

…as i said several days ago, this is going to come down to santana - and whether he is or will put pressure on the Twins to a) trade him sooner than later, and b), and more specifically, trade him to the Mets…if he does that, then the Mets have a lot of leverage, and should hang tight to fernando…

…however, if santana sits on the sideline, and the Yankees and Red Sox keep a toe in the water, then fernando’s name will and should continue to be mentioned…
Posted in Johan Santana, Mets Rumors on January 22nd, 2008
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53 Comments »
Comment by therealsince86
2008-01-22 07:32:19

Be patient, its not like there are a ton of options out there that are being taken by other teams. Livan, Colon, Loshe have not signed so there is a way backup plan. I would also guess that other SP are not being traded while waiting on Santana. So that being said I understand that ST is drawing near there is still plenty of time.
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Comment by rosemarymets
2008-01-22 07:36:24

YAWN….i just got up and feel i have read this same bs like a zillion times….i do hope we get him but REALLY…and please this backup plan mentioned previoulsly sounds horrible….if we dont get him let the kids pitch….(or start heilman)…
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Comment by Nightlife
2008-01-22 07:47:46

Yeah, no kidding. I’ll believe this when it happens, otherwise its the same junk over and over and over and over again everyday.
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Comment by Old Backstop
2008-01-22 07:50:50

I, for one, appreciate the updates.

It’s only the “same junk” if you are being impatient and unreasonable about reality.
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Comment by Nightlife
2008-01-22 07:57:00

I know a trade like this could take a lot of time, but its the exact same report everyday. “Mets have best offer”, “Mets may have best offer”, etc. etc. etc.

Comment by rd
2008-01-22 08:15:16

I appreciate the updates as well, after all this is a “mets blog.” Matt is doing a great job……. but it is the same (fill in word) every day…….

Comment by m00kie
2008-01-22 10:22:01

agreed, the updates have actually evolved quite significantly and I’m enjoying the saga ..

Comment by Charlie
2008-01-22 10:40:08

Here here! Keep it up, Matt. Great work.

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Comment by Stem Ad
2008-01-22 08:50:48

But if we didn’t get a million updates, and got none instead, then the idea of getting Santana would be a mere dream, when in reality, it’s very possible.
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Comment by therealsince86
2008-01-22 08:11:48

We know that they will not start Heilman, they could have before and did not. There is no reason to think they will now.
On to the “let the kids pitch”. If it were just the #5 spot I would be inclined to agree, however, with Pedro and Elduque in the rotation I think we need to sign one consistant #5 that we know will give us innings at average numbers. If we can get Colon, Loshe, Livan type on a 1 year deal then I think you have to do it.
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Comment by Gil the Pill
2008-01-22 09:29:09

Forget about colon his shoulder is fried according to the Mri the Mets had done on him and neither of the other two will sign a 1 year deal. The mets already offered Lohse a multi year deal why would he settle for a 1 year deal now. Dont you people read? I would rather have Mulvey pitch all season then sign Livan Hernandez..
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Comment by therealsince86
2008-01-22 10:03:21

If we offered Loshe a multiyear deal it was for peanuts or he would have signed already. DO you believe everything you read?

Also, if you brought up Mulvey this soon and he was not ready you could really damage his career. Sign Livan and then you get to wait a year.

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Comment by ivintagei
2008-01-22 07:40:04

If Santana’s stock is diminishing by the minute, why won’t the Twins make a deal now. With the fans having influence in their decision, the fans don’t like any of the offers so whats the holdup. It’s basically a stalemate and they know exactly the packages their receiving from the teams. SO TRADE HIM TO THE METS NOWWWW
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Comment by Old Backstop
2008-01-22 07:52:51

I doubt his value is dropping each day (or at all). Really, the pressure is on the Mets, not the Twins. The Mets desperately need a pitcher like Santana … the Twins have several suitors for Johan. As the Spring draws closer and closer, Omar may be forced more and more into a corner. This is the game the Twins are playing … it’s like a game of chicken.
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Comment by therealsince86
2008-01-22 08:05:56

Omar is not going to be forced into a corner because he knows that there are not many teams that can get Santana and his team will be competitive without him. You really think we can’t get a mid rotation starter as a backup plan?
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Comment by cyclone
2008-01-22 08:59:35

Mets do not need need Johan to compete in the mediocrity that is the NL East. They could be competititve without him. Johan would just make things a little easier.

I fail to see how the Mets are the ones in a corner when the Twins GM risks getting just one draft pick for a guy who most likely will leave the team at the end of the year, instead of a package of multiple players like the Mets, Yankees or Sox are offering. Smith is just going to wind up screwing himself if Santana sticks to his word about not waiving the no trade clause during the season.
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Comment by REYESBNASTY
2008-01-22 09:55:47

We will compete for the NL east w/o Johan u are correct - but w/ him we will win the division - and Im a fan of the Mets and a fan of the 08′ NL East being more of a sure thing for us…I think Omar is playing this 1 well and trying to obtain the stud ace while holding on to as many chips as possible - BUT my life has become clicking the refresh button on all MLB sites waiting for the “THIS JUST IN UPDATE” METS GET SANTANA - sooner than later PLEASE

Comment by pezao
2008-01-22 10:08:24

But it’s not just against the NL East that we want to compete. While it is somewhat true that just about anything can happen once you get to the playoffs, it’s best to leave as little to chance as possible. The Sox are a might tougher than the Phills (and I ain’t worried about Crede).

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Comment by Gil the Pill
2008-01-22 09:33:49

The pressure is not on the Mets. The mets do not desperately need a pitcher like Santana, where do you come up with a statement like that, Its pure propaganda. The twins are the team thats going to lose santana with the chance of getting very little in return as Santana has a full no trade clause and has stated he will NOT waive his no trade clause during the season. Dont let the facts get in the way of your thinking and posting to this site.
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Comment by Sylow59
2008-01-22 10:23:38

I believe there is presure on the Mets, but it is less than the pressure on the Twins.

It is a game of chicken that, given the stakes, the Mets will ultimately win. The Mets can wait until ST for a trade. It the Twins wait until ST the package, from anyone, will plummet more than today’s Dow.

The only thing that will prevent a Johann trade is greed on the part of the Mets.

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Comment by Gregg
2008-01-22 07:45:33

It would be great if they didn’t have to trade away Martinez. The only thing that worries me is what options the Mets will have left if they are unable to acquire Santana. If the Twins are running out of options then the Mets should put some pressure on them to make a decision soon.
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Comment by ravi3
2008-01-22 09:33:21

I agree…When I fantasize that the deal had gone thru, the only player I would ever think twice about was FMart…Thats not to say he is or should be a deal breaker, but I would like the deal so much better if we retained Fernando, and I’m sure most fans would as well
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Comment by signupcall
2008-01-22 07:45:50

just wait til the deadline, maybe oli or john will step up and be THAT guy this year, or maybe even pedro… should try to hold out hope that we can get him for a draft pick one year away…
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Comment by MetsUKfan
2008-01-22 07:54:55

The last mile is always the hardest in every negotiation.
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Comment by gowrightgo
2008-01-22 07:55:32

With the realization that came out recently…that Heilman is not a free agent until after the 2011 season….we should consider him in the trade and consider him extremely valuable.

For a team like the twins, Heilman has to be seen in either of 2 ways…
1) a solid and relatively inexpensive backup plan to trading Nathan as well down the line this season for even more prospects

2) a potential #3 in the rotation. I am convinced he would be an excellent starter now that he has matured in his role as 7th and 8th inning reliever and one of the better ones in the game

With that type of player, versatile, inexpensive and controlled for 3 more seasons…., I would think it is very easy to keep Fmart and Guerra out of this deal.

The offer should be revised.

Gomez, Heilman, Mulvey and Humber (nothing more)

To me…that provides the team with a CF’r of the future who has a bit of ML experience and has had a very good Minor league career to date, it provides them in Mulvey a guy who already has been said to have great control and poise on the mound. Knows how to pitch and is being mentioned as a number 3 starter in the future. It gives them a pretty solid back of the rotation prospect in Humber who lead the hitters league, PCL, at AAA in both wins and in WHIP which is no small feat. He is a bound to improve a tick on his fastball now that he is entering the 2nd full season after tommy John surgery and he is already to known to have one of the best curveballs in the minors. Lastly…it provides them a very flexible, inexpensive and proven 8th inning reliever in Heilman who desires to start and with his experience…should be very capable of doing it for them to at least a number 3 level. If also gives them the option of trading Nathan later in the season for more prospects and moving Heilman to the closer role which he could be very good at.

If it all broke right for them… they get 2 rotation ready guys in Mulvey and Humber to add to Liriano and Boof and whoever else they have. It gives them a CF for the next 6 years at essentially league minimum level cost wise who could develop the power to go with his speed. It also gives them a possible closer, 8th inning guy or potential 3rd starter.

Nice Haul in my eyes for Twins dumping one of the best pitchers in the game who is in his walk year and will be resigned by the trading partner for the most $$ in the game ever given to a pitcher.
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Comment by therealsince86
2008-01-22 08:08:57

I like this trade but would want the Twins to throw in Ricon. I know his stats were horrible last year but look at the years prior. Don’t mention that its all because of steriods or something, I think he just had a bad year. I would also like to see if there was some way tgat the deal could be expanded to get either Morales or Cuddyer too but that’s wishful thinking.
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Comment by BringBackDaveTelgheder
2008-01-22 09:25:24

You don’t want Rincon, he’s about done and has the makings of another Mota in NY.

59.66 ip, 65 h, 28 bb, 5.13 era

We’re better off with the options we have.
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Comment by therealsince86
2008-01-22 10:05:21

RedMagma

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 8:48 am

Did you look at his stats prior to last year?

Comment by BringBackDaveTelgheder
2008-01-22 10:44:19

Yes of course, he’s a steroids guy that was supposed to be part of the Delmon deal. The Rays wanted no part of him after taking a look at his medical charts.

If we were to include F-Mart in the deal, I would hope Omar could work his magic and get a good bullpen guy back like Guerrier or Neshek.

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Comment by Gil the Pill
2008-01-22 09:42:29

So you want to give up Mulvey, Humber, Heilman and Gomez for Santana. You are substituting Heilman for Guerra in the offer that has already been given to the Twins. If I was the Twins theres no way I take Heilman (who wont ever be a #3 pitcher) for Guerra who is a much better potential starter. If I am Omar no way do I make a HUGE hole in the bullpen by trading Heilman just to fill a hole in the rotation. If you do that you could have Jesus pitch for you as a starter and have him lose games because the Pen Sucks like it did last year. Where were you the last month of the 07 season? on vacation?
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Comment by therealsince86
2008-01-22 10:08:45

What the hell is your problem. Heilman may have more value to us than he ever has because of the lack of pitching on the market and if YOU could read you would notice that Heilman was put into the trade to not have to trade Guerra and or Martinez. I would trade Heilman for those two, would you? As for Heilman not having value to the Twins, they need some MLB ready talent in this deal. Heilman could slot in their rotation or even become the setup man if they move Nathan and use their current setup man to close.
Get of your holy throne and flush while you are at it.
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Comment by gowrightgo
2008-01-22 10:24:29

Exactly Real…the idea of putting in Heilman was to REMOVE the 2 POTENTIAL GEMS IN OUR PROSPECTS FMART AND GUERRA FROM IT.

Heilmans inclusion in the deal will not be without some pain to start. But assuming the reports are right….Dirty Sanchez is looking good and will be ready for the season. The combination of Wagner, Sanchez, Feliciano and Wise should be able to handle the 7th 8th and 9th pretty well. Also, we still have Shoeneweis and Sosa and Joe Smith to contribute amongst other candidates and in 2009, Burgos will be back and ready to contribute and we will have more reinforcements coming with the development from the pen guys we picked in Kunz, Rustich, and Collazo

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Comment by Mingo
2008-01-22 10:29:18

Jesus couldn’t pitch too well, he tips his pitches off too much. Now St. Peter is who I would rather have, he had a helluva curveball and a change-up that would break many a knee.
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Comment by Cheese
2008-01-22 08:27:43

Again, this is news?

Yeah, the Yankees and Sox are going to roll over and let Santana go to another team. Right…

P.S. Are these comments going to be locked and hidden within a day?
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Comment by therealsince86
2008-01-22 08:38:20

Hey, what’s that smell? Who cut the cheese?
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Comment by mrose
2008-01-22 09:25:06

well sir, if you pay attention you’d notice the Sox really don’t have the need for Santana or his payroll except to keep him away from the spanks or to drive up the price. The Yanks have Hanky and who knows his position, he may make a last ditch effort, and maybe the mets then throw in martinez and maybe that is still enough, but..id say the Sox will let him go to another team….they still are almost as good as gold to get to the WS…maybe some issues w/ Detroit…
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Comment by Gil the Pill
2008-01-22 09:46:39

Neither the yanks or redsox need Santana, they just need to avoid the other from getting him. I predict the Mets get him with the package of Humber, Mulvey, Gomez and Guerra they have already offered. If not save out young talent and move on. The Mets are still the best team in the NL east, if you dotn belive me check out the other teams blogs and see thier fans are just as pessimistic as some of you guys. The Mets lost the NL east last year by 1 game, they wont let that happen again. They have pride.
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Comment by napes22
2008-01-22 08:42:50

This Santana guy, he’s running for president right?
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Comment by gowrightgo
2008-01-22 08:47:01

One question I have is why have we heard nothing of alternative options from Omar.

If we do not get Santana…and to be honest, it has to still be considered less than a 50/50 proposition….why do we not hear of conversations between the Mets and Rays or Giants or Pirates for their pitchers we may want? Lincecum, Cain, Lowry, Kazmir, Snell. No updates…No whispers…..No innuendo about what may be happening if Santana deal falls through.

To be honest…it worries me a lot since I feel the Santana deal is not likely to happen. We heard a little of Blanton but that was months ago frankly and dissolved shortly after Haren was dealt.

If we sign Colon or Lohse or Livan or god forbid David Wells or Kris Benson…I think I will have a cow.

I am like others…I think we need on pitcher to be there in the event Duque and or Pedro need time off.

Pelfrey is our 5th starter I think but with one injury and no Santana, we are left with Sosa, Humber or Mulvey to pitch in. that is very dangerous for a team with aspirations of competing all year for the division title
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Comment by Slob
2008-01-22 09:00:21

I don’t think Sosa is allowed near the rotation anymore.
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Comment by Gil the Pill
2008-01-22 09:49:17

You dotn hear about Omars trades because that the way he likes it. each of the last two years the rumors were wrong and Omar did what wasnt reported, the more people who know about what your thinking the less likely to get a trade done. Omar is smart.
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Comment by gowrightgo
2008-01-22 10:10:04

To be honest…while I typically agree that the less you hear the better off you are…in this case, leaking about our attention going somewhere else would be good if the target really is Santana.

In my scenario…we get some new pressure on the GM in Twinsland if we leak that we are in discussions with the Giants about Cain, or lincecum for example. They may then decide before our deal leaves the table…they should re-engage Omar and try to work it out.

Just a thought. Plus it does lay a back up plan
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Comment by Xavier22
2008-01-22 10:32:28

Yeah but, just because we, the viewing public, don’t hear about other deals doesn’t mean that the other GMs arent. I’m sure there’s a “code” amongst GMs to keep certain discussions out of the press if requested.

So Omar could be having backburner discussions with the Pirates, As, etc while directly dealing with the Twins as well (and all the GMs involved are aware about what’s going on to varying degrees).

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Comment by Mingo
2008-01-22 10:38:57

The reason we aren’t hearing about more options is if the Mets start making offers to other teams and they are well-known, the Twins can use those offers to up their offer for Santana.
As of right now, since the Mets supposedly offered Heilmann, Gomez and Humber for Bedard. The Twins are going to ask for more than that for Santana. The Twins won’t sell Santana for a shorter deal than they can get right now.
This is a game of chicken right now, and the Twins GM just doesn’t seem to have the chops that Minaya has. Omar knows that if Santana doesn’t traded right now, they can offer as much as the Yanks and Sox to get him after next season and keep all of their young players. I can’t see any way that Santana will accept a trade in the middle of the season unless the Twins have a losing record. And the only choice the Twins have is to trade him now or lose him.
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Comment by mikey_FF
2008-01-22 09:05:47

“but, if the Yankees and Red Sox are ‘diminishing by the week,’ as walters writes, and as multiple reports have suggested over the last week or so, then why should the Mets part with one penny more than they should…”

Finally … some sanity.
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Comment by scottykick
2008-01-22 09:08:09

The Ideal rotation would be

1-Johan Santana
2-Pedro Martinez
3-John Maine
4-Oliver Perez
5-Orlando Hernandez or Mike Pelfry

Worst Case Scenerio

1-Pedro Martinez
2-Freddy Garcia
3-John Maine
4-Oliver Perez
5-Orlando Hernandez or Mike Pelfry

God I hope not scenerio

1-Pedro Martinez
2-John Maine
3-Oliver Perez
4-Livian Hernandez
5-Bartolo Colon
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Comment by mrose
2008-01-22 09:26:19

isn’t garcia out half the year?
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Comment by napes22
2008-01-22 09:56:04

Yes, at least June.
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Comment by bobabouy01
2008-01-22 09:33:46

Not that Matt needs anyone to stick up for him here, but you guys that are on his back for reporting what is being written in the newspapers and on other websites or being reported on TV need to remember one thing……….THIS IS A BLOG !!!! Matt does a great job here of trying to keep everyone that comes to this site apprised of what is being said and by whom. He’s not coming out and reporting that he feels that we’ll get Johan any day….he is simply stating what he is finding out there…..yes, he does offer his own commentary and opinion afterwards, but it’s done to either support or rebut the reports that he is coming across.
I am an Oakland Raider fan living on the east coast, so for me the football season is LONG over…..I’m not into hoops and aside from my NJ Devils there is nothing else going on in sports at this time of the year to hold my interest…….I for one would rather read someones opinions (and even some of the comments that people post afterwards !) than to read nothing at all while I wait for ST to start.
Thank you Matt………keep up the great work !!
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Comment by Jaded1983
2008-01-22 09:39:16

Amen!
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Comment by taestee
2008-01-22 09:51:51

LOL, don’t you get tired of writing the same stuff day after day?
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Comment by Charlie
2008-01-22 10:33:08

It’s not like this is happening in a vacuum. Billy Smith will go to each team when he’s ready to pull the trigger and say something to the effect of:

hey, I’m about to trade JS to the Mets for the four prospects (sans Fmart). Want to sweeten your deal to get him? Last chance?

You know at that time it will be decided whether the Mets need to put Fmart in the pot. To me, it’s not JS who’s in the drivers seat. It’s Billy Smith. When he’s ready to make the deal, it will get done - and not a second sooner.
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Comment by dmbrian27
2008-01-22 10:38:32

I understand the Twins would like to get the most value for Santana, but it seems like getting him out of the American League especially from the Red Sox and/or Yankees would be a strong second priority.

If I were the Twins I would hate to have a great team in the future and then every year that has to face Santana 2 - 3 times in a playoff series. The Red Sox and Yankees are built to be in the playoffs every year so this is a very good reality, and something the Twins have to consider.

If it is up to me, I get him out of the AL where the Twins don’t have to see him during the regular and/or the post season.

I hope this plays into the thinking of the Twins GM and he presents the Mets a final offer so we can just move on with our lives already.
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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 8:49 am

Jan 22, 2008 8:57 am - Buzz: M’s Focused on Bedard

...posted by Matthew Cerrone...

In a post to his blog for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, John Hickey breaks down the market for O’s LHP Erik Bedard, and writes…

“The competition for Bedard may come down to the Mariners and the New York Mets. But the Mets have not pushed hard for Bedard, and the Mariners, while willing to trade Adam Jones, haven’t been willing to meet all the Baltimore demands.”

…first off, hickey is not quoting a source, he’s simply stating his opinion…by the way, it’s a very logical opinion, considering that the Mets are the only other team besides the M’s who are aggressively pursuing an ace in the trade market…

Last week, there had been talk of a potential swap between Baltimore and the Cubs, involving Bedard and 2B Brian Roberts. For more, read MLB Trade Rumors.

During December, the Mets offered Aaron Heilman, Carlos Gomez and Philip Humber to the O’s for Bedard, according to old reports from ESPN.com and MLB.com, among others, but it was rejected.

…as such, i hear lots of fans suggest that the Mets should just add a player like Fernando Martinez to get it done, much like with Johan Santana…the thing is, as i wrote during the Winter Meetings, i believe the O’s have been shopping bedard in hopes of getting back a very specific set of talent, and will just as soon start the season with him now, allowing more time to try and work on a contract extension, than trade him just to trade him for parts and pieces…in other words, if the O’s can not snag a player like M’s OF Adam Jones, Reds OF Jay Bruce or Dodgers OF Matt Kemp, et al, bedard will not be traded, since he is still two seasons away from being a free agent…

…for the Mets, i still believe it is santana or bust, which i truly hope is not the case…i mean, it’s amazing to me that the Mets off-season may be perceived as a total failure if they do not manage to trade for the best pitcher in baseball…that’s a lot to live up to, to say the least…

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 8:50 am

I think Smith overplayed his hand big time here.

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 8:52 am

Johan Santana Rumors


http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/

I know some of you crave daily Johan Santana updates...today we've got a blurb from Charley Walters:

The Twins say they're not panicking while holding out for the best deal for Johan Santana. But word within baseball circles is that offers by the New York Yankees (no more Phil Hughes) and Boston Red Sox are diminishing by the week. Best bet now for a trade of the two-time Cy Young Award winner appears to be with the New York Mets in a deal that would not include fast-rising hitter Fernando Martinez.

Yikes - from those solid Yankee/Red Sox offers to a Martinez-less Mets package? If that happens then I would say Bill Smith overplayed his hand. Kat O'Brien recently talked to Smith, but wasn't able to get much out of him. She believes the Yanks, Red Sox, and Mets "all retain some interest."




I wonder if they will improve that 5 year 90 mil offer before accepting any of these diminishing offers. I would give another shot at an extension before accepting the Mets offer sans F-Mart.

Posted by: Jared78 | January 22, 2008 at 08:25 AM

what a noob

Posted by: JerseyMetFan | January 22, 2008 at 08:28 AM

What's a noob?

Posted by: Jared78 | January 22, 2008 at 08:31 AM

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/noob

Posted by: JerseyMetFan | January 22, 2008 at 08:34 AM

Time for Seattle to step back in? Maybe now the Twins would consider a deal of Adam Jones, Brandon Morrow, Chris Tillman, and either George Sherrill or (preferably) another minor leaguer aside from Balentien, Clement, Truinfel, or Aumont?

Posted by: KingCorran | January 22, 2008 at 08:44 AM

Got it, thanks. A little unnecessary but I would be a bit jaded if my team choked as bad as the Mets did this fall.

All I'm saying is that the Twins have one of the wealthiest owners in baseball and a new stadium opening in a couple of years and the Mets package minus F-Mart is a very hard sell to a fan base that has to be tired of losing star players. Mulvey/Humber are 3's at best and the Twins have plenty of young guys in their system that project to be 3-5's. Guerra has great stuff and scouts love his projection but its not like he dominated A-ball last year. Gomes has great speed and a nice frame but is he ever going to hit enough? The Mets package is probably right there with the one being offered by my Red Sox and the Yanks, just saying it is extremely risky and if you have an owner who is s worth 800-900 million dollars I would try and close the gap and offering 5 years/110mil (I think their offer was 5/90 mil)or something before accepting a package like that without F-Mart.

Posted by: Jared78 | January 22, 2008 at 08:51 AM

It's always tough to figure how these things will play out: were the Yanks and Sox just in it to keep Santana from going to the other team? Are they really out now? Are Adam Jones or Fernando Martinez really going to hold up a Johan deal?

Bottom line: I think the Mets need Santana more than any other team and I think the Sox and Yanks would be more than happy to see the Mets get him. Look for Johan to be a Met and Martinez to be playing in Rochester next season.

Posted by: BigScooter | January 22, 2008 at 08:57 AM

If there's a less credible source in the Twin Cities than Walters, I don't know who it would be. Sounds like a slow news day so he made stuff up again.

That said, Smith has contended from the outset that if he didn't get what he felt he needed from any team, he'd be fine with starting the season with Santana on the hill Opening Day. Not sure I consider it overplaying his hand if that turns out to be what happens.

The Sox/Yanks/Mets right now seem to think they'll be fine as presently constituted without Santana. Have to figure that before too long in to the season, at least one of them will realize they were wrong. This saga is a long way from being over.

Posted by: JimCrikket | January 22, 2008 at 08:57 AM

I still think that a) The Twins will hang onto him, or b) some darkhorse will sweep in and snatch him out from under everyone.

Posted by: FineHamAbounds | January 22, 2008 at 09:19 AM

Being a huge mets fan, I really can't see them getting him which is terrible to say, but it doesn't seem the twins want to deal him unless they get F-Mart. Omar is probably very hesitant especially after Kazmir-Zambrano

Posted by: Perry | January 22, 2008 at 09:35 AM

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 8:53 am

QUOTE(bosockboy @ Jan 21 2008, 10:57 AM) *
I would be by no means upset if the Sox pass on Santana and go to war as is, but remember this:

The Yanks have a ton of money coming off the books next fall (Giambi, Abreu) and Damon in one more year. With a hole at 1B, I fully expect the Yankees to sign Teixeira this winter and if Santana goes untraded, they could very easily sign both as FA.

Let's try and think in the long-term here, not just 2008.

I'd sure like to have Santana and Beckett pitching to this lineup:

Damon
Jeter
Abreu
ARod
Teixieira
Posada
Matsui
Cano
Cabrera

Combine that possibility with what the Tigers lineup could do in 2008, and I don't feel Santana is that much of a "luxury."


santana would be great at a reasonable cost , but do you believe we will be able to outspend the yanks. they will always have more cash . the way to compete with them is developement of a minor league that produces a player or two every year

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 8:54 am

QUOTE(joelahood @ Jan 21 2008, 11:12 AM) *
santana would be great at a reasonable cost , but do you believe we will be able to outspend the yanks. they will always have more cash . the way to compete with them is developement of a minor league that produces a player or two every year.


Or use some of our excess talent to acquire a HOF caliber player with a rare skill (staff ace) who would otherwise be favored to signed with NY because of the open market.

QUOTE(joelahood @ Jan 21 2008, 11:02 AM) *
different situation now that we have becket. besides becket at 55 million gives the sox a lot more flexability.i still believe that an everyday player has more impact then a pitcher. i still think a boat load of prospects and a huge contract is to expensive



Not necessarily does an "everyday" player have more impact. An everyday player receives about 700 plate appearances. A pitcher can face over 1000 batters. That's impact. And you can't tell me that Josh Beckett did not have "impact" the way an everyday player in the play-offs would. In the post-season, strong starting pitching wins.

QUOTE(deythur @ Jan 20 2008, 07:48 AM) *
The Sox traded Carl Pavano and Tony Armas Jr. for Pedro. They traded Heathcliff Slocom For Tek and Derek Lowe. I guess what im saying is that Jeff Bagwell turned out to be a bad deal but it goes both ways on trades.


Sorry for the delay with my response to your entire post.

Slocumb for Varitek and Lowe was the classic "no brainer"; I still can't believe that Seattle offered the deal, to begin with. You might recall that at that time, our accused closer had been torching just about every other save opportunity since August of the previous year. The deal was one where if you were the RSFO, you try to NOT burst out laughing, while you're trying to say with a straight face "Uh, sure; we hate to part with Heathcliff, but . . . yeah, OK."

As I recall (maybe incorrectly), the Sox never actually had Armas, Jr.; they had just acquired him in another deal, or a three-way deal was involved, with Armas "passing through" the RS. (If I'm wrong, let me know; the recent editions of the Baseball Encyclopedia stupidly has omitted one of its best features - "All Major League Transactions since 1900").


QUOTE

The proposed deals believed to be on the table are one built around Lester and Crisp, and one based around Ellsbury. Not both. So yeah the deal does involve prospects. Not proven major league anything.

As with many other posters here, these are just my opinions, based mostly on observation, mixed in with a little alleged intuition, but I (and perhaps others) have a sense about Ellsbury that tells me he could be one of the great ones. If not, based on what he already has brought to the table (and the resulting disruptive effects upon other teams' defense and pitching), he should at least be allowed to show the team what he can do. And let's face it, he is, already, an upgrade over Crisp.

Speed (esp. like the kind Ellsbury has) is one of the few baseball skills which will NOT diminish in a player, merely because he has advanced from the minor leagues to the parent club.

And if you trade Lester, well, you've somewhat painted yourself into a corner - now, your top two left-handed (almost always a scarce commodity, to begin with) pitching prospects are BOTH gone.

QUOTE

What happens if Lester never gains control of the strike zone and Crisp continues to be sub-par and Lowrie and Masterson never amount to anything (which is the case for most prospects) ?


Lester appeared to appreciably improve his control, while learning to spot that great slider of his; he really handcuffed a lot of right-handed hitters on a consistent basis, over the last month or so of the regular season, as well as during the playoffs. Increasingly so, he reminds me of a vintage Bruce Hurst (the one who went something like 11-1 at Fenway during one of his last seasons in Boston).

So much of this (the development and ensuing improvement of many of these guys) seems to be coming together at an advanced, as well as an accelerated rate. Good ML results so far.

Again, my main point is that this current group of young players have played on the same Sox' farm teams as teammates; perhaps they "fed" off each other in a way which enhanced their self-improvement. It's not that much of a stretch to make such a conclusion, I believe. I'd like to see that same dynamic carry over to the parent club with these players - maybe, just maybe you will have the added benefit of the younger players "pushing" some of the veterans a little bit. No "shot" intended here (against any of the veterans), but an infusion of young and talented players like these is like buying "complacency insurance".

QUOTE

Lester, Crisp, Lowrie and Masterson is a deal i make in a heartbeat. It doesnt cripple the farm system, its what the farm is for when the big clubs roster is full. If Ellsbury flops its something the Sox will have to deal with. They did fine with Crisp.
I agree with three-quarters of your first sentence here. I'm not averse to losing Crisp, Lowrie and Masterson; if they could do this deal for those three, plus a lower-level prospect or two, it would be the best of both worlds (i.e. - get Santana and keep the rest of the other guys).

QUOTE

Enough with the one arm injury crap, what if Manny had taken a fastball to the eye after signing his huge contract?


Huh? Who did we trade for Manny? Wasn't that a free agency deal?

QUOTE

Sorry for the incoherence in this post but the fact that people dont want Santana is baffling and makes my fingers do crazy things on the keyboard.
Holy sh*t, what makes you think that I DON'T want Santana on the RS? Not wanting to trade, Ellsbury, Lester or even Buchholz for him does NOT mean that those who hold that opinion do not want Santana. In that regard, I don't understand your logic here at all.

QUOTE

Seriously has anyone seen him pitch?


(I'll give this statement the response it deserves. Sorry.)

Who? Santana? No, I've never even heard of him before your post; I though that he was the "Santana" who played six-note guitar in the eponymous band. Give me a break. Now, according to your reasoning, some of us don't want Santana because we haven't "seen him pitch" (or because we are otherwise unfamiliar with his career)?

How did you arrive at that one? There IS a reason that we all have been talking about getting him, isn't there? However, simply stated, I don't want to eviscerate our 40-man roster to do so.

Come on.

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 8:55 am

QUOTE(SugarDaddy38 @ Jan 22 2008, 12:38 AM) *
How can one man (i.e. a pitcher) that touches the ball every play NOT have a MAJOR impact on the game?

The ability to have control over how a hitter hits (or at least approaches his at bat), how a fielder adjusts his position to accompdate the hitter's approach to his pitcher, and how an opposing manager constructs his line-up and play calls is the definition of impact.

Not trying to piss in your Cheerios here, but I would have to say that a top notch / ACE pitcher is the epitome of IMPACT! Matter-of-fact, any quality SP has impact...

And I personally would take Santana over Lester, ELJE and Masterson right now... Granted Theo is far more "common sensical" than I in splitting our two major prospects, and I do hope in the end the Twinkies take the Lester / Coco deal (at least I'll get to see them play in the TC's); however, if we need to package BOTH Lester and ELJE in order to do the deal, just do it! I think he'll reserve that for the 11th hour IFF the Twinkies operate in good faith (i.e. don't go leveraging that offer for half the NY Mets)...

I am now swearing off this thread any longer in order to keep the RS-specific quadrant of my bain from atrophying too much and will start surfing other threads... 4 weeks until Spring Training!!! rolleyes.gif Hope to see Santana in Sox colors in a couple weeks. Just imagine how nice an authentic alternate home #57 jersey would look in the stands on a Sunday afternoon in June...


I don't mean to get snarky here, SD38, but I see that you're from the Land 'o' Lakes.

You wouldn't be an embedded Twins fan, would you? They ARE rumored to exist, you know. The fans, I mean

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 12:58 pm

SI Tom Verducci- Starting point: stability
Schilling's right: The durable rotation has the edge


http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2008/writers/tom_verducci/01/22/rotation.stability/index.html?eref=si_mlb

Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling last March correctly predicted, in theory, the winner of the American League East when he said, "The rotation that makes the most starts wins the division. It's that simple." Boston's projected five-man rotation made 140 starts, tops in the division; the Red Sox won the division. The Yankees' season-opening rotation made 105 starts.

In 2006 it was New York that won the battle over Boston for most starts by its top five starters, 125-107 -- and also won the division.

The Schilling Theory got me thinking that its applications go beyond the Boston-New York rivalry. As players are better trained than ever before and as front offices make better use of available information than ever before, the difference between going home or to the playoffs may rest more on rotation stability than any other factor -- which means pennant races might well be decided by the happenstance of injury. In other words, you can pour enormous resources and planning into team building and yet you're left to the mercy of when the alarm clocks that are ulnar collateral nerves or rotator cuffs decide to go off.




In coming weeks I'll get to what this means for the 2008 Red Sox and Yankees -- and the seven most at-risk young starters in baseball -- but let's just say for now that New York would be much better off in the short run, though not as certainly in the long run, to trade for Twins ace Johan Santana before spring training. The Yankees can build years of success around young starting pitchers Joba Chamberlain, Phil Hughes and Ian Kennedy, but just not this year without some risk. The Yankees know they can't push any of those starters to 200 innings this year -- not at their ages and not given the risky leap in workload it would require. And remember, the Yankees' mission is to get to the World Series, which requires a seventh month of starts for three young pitchers who aren't ready for even six full months yet.

Without Santana, New York must plan for rotation instability in 2008. It can be done, but the odds begin to work against a team the more second-tier starters it has to plug in. ("Second tier" is not a blanket evaluation of talent -- sometimes a replacement is better than the original -- but a marker of stability.) Indeed, rotation stability has been one big reason why Boston has been winning the titles that used to belong to New York. This chart (above, right) offers a quick look at the number of starters used by AL East teams from 2004 through '07.

The Yankees have needed 10 more starting pitchers over the past four seasons than Boston and are well outside the range of every other team in the division. That's only part of the story, though. Look at the starts needed from second-tier pitchers -- that is, all starts made by everyone other than the five most-used starters each year:

Here the difference in rotation stability is even more apparent. Over the past four seasons the Yankees have handed the ball to second-tier starting pitchers 60 more times than did Boston. The Red Sox have done a better job identifying reliable starting pitchers and, by a combination of luck and design, keeping them healthy.

O.K., so what? How important is that? The Yankees were 23-18 in those 41 second-tier starts last season. And every team needs depth, right? After all, the average team uses 10 starting pitchers per year. But each of the past six world champions have been below that average, while the Yankees have been worse than average every year since their last World Series appearance, in 2003, when they needed only nine. (Since then New York has used 12, 14, 12 and 14 starters. It's the equivalent of a golfer having to scramble often to save par; it can be done, but with a higher degree of difficulty.)


Starting Pitchers Used, 2004-07
Blue Jays 25
Red Sox 26
Devil Rays 26
Orioles 28
Yankees 36

Games Started by Second-Tier Starters
Team 2004 2005 2006 2007 Total
Yankees 36 51 26 41 154
Red Sox 5 19 48 22 94

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Re: Know Your Enemy: The 2008 AL East Thread

Post  RedMagma on Tue Jan 22, 2008 1:05 pm

SI Tom Verducci- Starting point: stability
Schilling's right: The durable rotation has the edge

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2008/writers/tom_verducci/01/22/rotation.stability/index.html?eref=si_mlb

Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling last March correctly predicted, in theory, the winner of the American League East when he said, "The rotation that makes the most starts wins the division. It's that simple." Boston's projected five-man rotation made 140 starts, tops in the division; the Red Sox won the division. The Yankees' season-opening rotation made 105 starts.



In 2006 it was New York that won the battle over Boston for most starts by its top five starters, 125-107 -- and also won the division.

The Schilling Theory got me thinking that its applications go beyond the Boston-New York rivalry. As players are better trained than ever before and as front offices make better use of available information than ever before, the difference between going home or to the playoffs may rest more on rotation stability than any other factor -- which means pennant races might well be decided by the happenstance of injury. In other words, you can pour enormous resources and planning into team building and yet you're left to the mercy of when the alarm clocks that are ulnar collateral nerves or rotator cuffs decide to go off.




In coming weeks I'll get to what this means for the 2008 Red Sox and Yankees -- and the seven most at-risk young starters in baseball -- but let's just say for now that New York would be much better off in the short run, though not as certainly in the long run, to trade for Twins ace Johan Santana before spring training. The Yankees can build years of success around young starting pitchers Joba Chamberlain, Phil Hughes and Ian Kennedy, but just not this year without some risk. The Yankees know they can't push any of those starters to 200 innings this year -- not at their ages and not given the risky leap in workload it would require. And remember, the Yankees' mission is to get to the World Series, which requires a seventh month of starts for three young pitchers who aren't ready for even six full months yet.

Without Santana, New York must plan for rotation instability in 2008. It can be done, but the odds begin to work against a team the more second-tier starters it has to plug in. ("Second tier" is not a blanket evaluation of talent -- sometimes a replacement is better than the original -- but a marker of stability.) Indeed, rotation stability has been one big reason why Boston has been winning the titles that used to belong to New York. This chart (above, right) offers a quick look at the number of starters used by AL East teams from 2004 through '07.

The Yankees have needed 10 more starting pitchers over the past four seasons than Boston and are well outside the range of every other team in the division. That's only part of the story, though. Look at the starts needed from second-tier pitchers -- that is, all starts made by everyone other than the five most-used starters each year:

Here the difference in rotation stability is even more apparent. Over the past four seasons the Yankees have handed the ball to second-tier starting pitchers 60 more times than did Boston. The Red Sox have done a better job identifying reliable starting pitchers and, by a combination of luck and design, keeping them healthy.

O.K., so what? How important is that? The Yankees were 23-18 in those 41 second-tier starts last season. And every team needs depth, right? After all, the average team uses 10 starting pitchers per year. But each of the past six world champions have been below that average, while the Yankees have been worse than average every year since their last World Series appearance, in 2003, when they needed only nine. (Since then New York has used 12, 14, 12 and 14 starters. It's the equivalent of a golfer having to scramble often to save par; it can be done, but with a higher degree of difficulty.)


Starting Pitchers Used, 2004-07
Blue Jays 25
Red Sox 26
Devil Rays 26
Orioles 28
Yankees 36

Games Started by Second-Tier Starters
Team 2004 2005 2006 2007 Total
Yankees 36 51 26 41 154
Red Sox 5 19 48 22 94

This is reason Why I think Yankees need to go aftet Santana. The Yankees won't let theur young trio of pitchers go over than 200 innings. What are your thoughts?

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